Clair trained at the Susan Robinson School in Byfleet. She won a Prix de
Bourse in the 1989 Prix de Lausanne competition before joining the Royal
Ballet School in 1990. Clair won the Gold Medal in the 1990 Adeline Geneé
Awards and began her professional career with English National Ballet in
1992. During her career she also danced with London City Ballet, Het
Nationale Ballet in The Netherlands and Brussels Ballet in Belgium. She
returned to the UK in 2009 to join The Michael Clark Company. Clair
completed a Bachelor of Arts Degree at Birkbeck College, University of
London in 2001 and graduated with a Professional Dance Teaching Diploma
from the RAD in 2008. She has previously taught for The Urdang Academy in
London and Bird College in Sidcup. She is a free lance teacher for the
Royal Academy of Dance both at Head Quarters and on their International
Summer School in Italy. Clair was previously Head of Ballet
at The D&B School of Performing Arts in Bromley for 4 years and since moving to
Brighton is now Head of Ballet for The Brighton Academy whilst developing her own
School, Ballet Brighton.
portraits for auditions & promotion
Jacquie trained at The Bush Davies School and the Central School of Ballet. She worked with Northern Ballet Theatre (A Simple Man, Coppelia), Vienna Festival Ballet (Swan Lake UK tour), Weiner Ballet Theater (Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, Nutcracker European tour) and The Georgia Ballet, USA where she performed the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker.
Her musical theatre credits include the UK tour of Oklahoma, The Phantom Of The Opera in Hamburg, Germany as Dance Captain and Ballet Chorus and the USA tour of The Phantom Of The Opera, with her husband Ray Gabbard.
After returning to London she trained as a Pilates Teacher with Body Control Pilates and she is now a fully qualified teacher and holds a level 3 REPS. In 2014 Jacquie gained the ISTD’s DDI diploma teaching qualification in ballet.
Photograph with Suzanne Gielgud by © Mike Champion
Alexander Simpkins took his first ballet lessons in London with Suzanna Raymond and Denise Kelly. Aged 9, he began training at the Royal Academy of Dance headquarters with John O’Brien. After completing his dance education at Central School of Ballet, he took his first job abroad in Austria with the Grazer Ballet. He was a member of the Ballet de Zaragoza in Spain for four years He returned to Austria to work in Linz and completed his career as a soloist with various companies in Germany. His repertoire included roles in classical ballets such as Swan Lake, Giselle, Nutcracker (Prince and Fritz). He danced in ballets by Frederick Ashton (Les Patineurs), George Balanchine (Allegro Brillante), Derek Deane (Tres Poemas); neo classical works by choreographers such as Richard Wherlock, Davide Bombana, Robert North, Nils Christe and in contemporary creations including the work of Maya M. Carroll.
Alex has worked as a Guest Ballet Master for several companies in Germany. He completed a Master of Arts degree in teaching from the Palucca University of Dance, Dresden, where he also taught students on the dancer’s and dance teacher’s programmes. In 2014 he graduated from the Royal Academy of Dance Professional Dancer’s Teacher’s Diploma with Distinction. He has additionally trained as a Gyrotonic Instructor.
Alex began dancing from the age of 6. He then went on to train at the Royal Ballet School’s White Lodge and then it’s Upper School from 1988-1995. During his last few years as a student he worked touring with the Birmingham Royal Ballet, dancing in ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘The Nutcracker’. With the Royal Ballet, he danced in ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘Giselle’ at Convent Garden.
He joined Ballet Schindowski in Germany where two years later was promoted to Soloist. After 6 years with them he joined Ballet Kiel also as a Soloist expanding his contemporary dance knowledge and performed in new works such as ‘The Doors’, ‘Moazart’s requieM’ and ‘The Wall’ which were choreographed by Mario Schroeder. In 2005 Alex returned back to London and worked as a Freelance dancer. West End credits includes ‘Equus’ starring Daniel Radcliff and Will Tuckett’s production of ‘Pinocchio’ at The Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theatre. He then also joined the UK tour of ‘Equus’ which was then followed by performing and touring as Guest Soloist with Tetsuaya Kumakawa’s K Ballet in Japan, dancing in ‘Giselle’, ‘Sleeping Beauty’ and ‘Coppelia’.
Whilst in London Alex began teaching and on moving to West Sussex has completed his ISTD DDI and this year also his DDE Diploma.
Alex currently teaches in various schools including the Brighton Academy and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of music and Dance (London).